Life in the 80s

As the 80s decade of excess began, and the me generation came to be, life in the 80s was bigger, louder, and definitely brighter.

It was a decade that brought the world tons of new technology, awesome new fashion, and endless entertainment.

When it came to entertainment, cable television really started in the 70s, but became a big part of life in the 80s, and its rise in popularity and accessibility was a life changing aspect of the decade.

New stations like MTV, Nickelodeon, and CNN became part of everyday life in the 80s, and for a little extra per month, you could get HBO, the Disney Channel, and Showtime.

Technology also brought us some fantastic new toys and resources. IBM, Apple, and Commodore gave us computers, and Motorola gave us the gigantic first generation of the now miniscule cell phone.

Atari, Sega, and Nintendo battled it out in the console wars—Nintendo coming out on top—and all three survived a huge video game crash in 1983. New distractions like Pac Man, Asteroids, Frogger, Donkey Kong, and the start of the Mario Bros series of games kept us amused for hours—when we weren’t trying to solve the Rubik’s Cube.

The 80s fashion wouldn’t have been the 80s without leg warmers, Ray Ban sunglasses, acid-washed jeans, parachute pants, and Members Only jackets.

Fads like rubber bracelets, Swatch watches, fingerless lace gloves, and rubber bracelets kept us fashionable. The 80s were also the decade of power suits and shoulder pads that the ever-growing workforce of women wore to their new and powerful jobs.

Neon anything and animal prints were everywhere—clothes, watches, shoes, and accessories, and they all screamed for attention. Madonna and Michael Jackson, among other musicians, were the big trendsetters of the decade.

In the 80s, everybody fit in somewhere. They hung out together, wore the same style of clothes and rocked similar 80s hairstyles. There were punks, preps, nerds, and mall rats, as well as the new wavers and new romantics.

Another big clique of the 80s was the hip-hop crowd. These flexible followers of the funky beat brought us stunning dance moves in the form of break dancing, and put parachute pants firmly on the map of the 80s.

The 80s were also full of awesome new music, movies, and television shows. The Bangles, Madonna, Cyndi Lauper, the Go Go’s, Blondie, and Heart showed us that women could totally rock.

Hair bands and heavy metal groups like Def Leppard, Guns N’ Roses, Poison, Van Halen, and Kiss tore up the music charts.

New wave band like Duran Duran, The Cure, The Smiths, and Depeche Mode brought us new sounds and styles, and Grandmaster Flash, Run-DMC, and the Beastie Boys helped propel hip-hop into the mainstream.

80s movies like Back to the Future, Better off Dead, Top Gun, and E.T. were released, while the age of the sitcom and primetime soaps really took off on the small screen with shows like Perfect Strangers, The Cosby Show, Cheers, Dallas, and Dynasty.

Life in the 80s was new, fun, and loud. It was the beginning of everything high-tech, innovative fashions, and future classics.